Clean energy advocates Solar Citizens have urged South Australia’s upper house to reject the Marshall Government’s plan to tax zero emissions vehicles that run on renewable energy.

The Government’s bill to single out electric vehicle owners with a road user charge passed South Australia’s House of Assembly today, with a showdown now looming in the upper house before parliament rises in November.

Solar Citizens’ national director Ellen Roberts said the crossbench should reject the bill in its current form and demand a stronger package of incentives for new EV purchases.

“The government’s plan locks in a permanent next tax in exchange for a small number of temporary grants,” Ms Roberts said.

“Zero emissions vehicles will tackle rising transport emissions and fuel costs, but the government’s tax will turn prospective buyers away,” she said.

The Government will need to win over crossbench MPs to pass the controversial bill, with Labor and the Greens having already confirmed their opposition to the proposed tax on zero emissions vehicles.

In August, Solar Citizens’ launched the Charge Ahead campaign, which asks state politicians to tackle the financial barriers for EV buyers by supporting stamp duty exemptions, discounted registration and upfront purchase subsidies.

Electric vehicle uptake has surged in the ACT and NSW on the back of nation-leading policies [1] introduced earlier this year, which Roberts said South Australia should replicate.

“South Australia is a world leader for rooftop solar and large-scale renewables, but taxing electric vehicles without strong incentives would be a step in the wrong direction.”

“Rather than putting a new tax on clean air, the government should be accelerating South Australia’s snail-paced electric vehicle transition.”

[1] The Driven, EV uptake gets 20 per cent boost from ACT’s free rego policy, August 9 2021.

Charge Ahead


Charge Ahead is @solarcitizens campaign to get Australia on the road to sustainable transport.